This weeks travel tip is specifically for South Africa.
If you are planning on going to South Africa, you have to go to Kruger National Park! South Africa has many reserves, and although I have not been to all of them, Kruger is the best. I saw every animal I wanted to see, including all of the big five. It is also huge. I spent two weeks there and I only saw half of the park. Rumor has it that Mozambique and Zimbabwe are going to open the border around their parks to make Kruger one giant park. Hopefully that happens soon.
I usually never plan my trips, but I would strongly suggest that you make bookings in the park as far in advanced as possible. It is a popular reserve for both tourists and citizens. The best place to do make reservations and find information about the park is Kruger’s actual website.
If you are going through the park for the first time, I recommend that you do a walking, sunset, and night safari. I did all three, and each were unique and amazing. The sunset and walking safari are a must. You should stay at Lower Sabe at least one night, more if possible. Anyone who has gone to Kruger will tell you that it is one of the best places to see animals. If you have several days in the park, then I would recommend driving yourself around the park and doing a few safaris at the different campsites. This allows you to go at your own pace and watch animals for as long as you like.
My last suggestion is if you are planning on camping in Kruger, make sure you bring a mat. The ground is harder in South Africa than most places. Ok, that might not be true, but I didn’t bring a mat and the ground felt harder than any other ground I have ever slept on.